Published 16th August 2019
I’ve just had the summer of a lifetime and I’m so grateful that I’ve been blessed enough to have so many wonderful experiences and meet so many new people. My summer brought joys, challenges, laughter and sunburn and I wouldn’t change it for the world. It’s been a dream of mine for years to go to Thailand and experience a totally new culture (and see the beautiful elephants). I had so many new and exciting opportunities while I was over there; including teaching English in a local school, shopping at night markets, cooking authentic Thai food and the absolute
Anyone who knows me knows how important and special elephants are to me, so the fact that I had the opportunity to work closely with them is beyond words. I had the chance to feed, walk and bathe them at two different locations; Kanchanaburi and Hua Hin. I learnt about their history of abuse in circuses and riding trades and it broke my heart but there are sanctuaries and wildlife centres that dedicate their work to caring for and looking after them, which is so wonderful and was a joy to watch. I love animals and I’ve never had a pet before so I didn’t realise the effects that being with them had on your mood. I can honestly say that when I was feeding the elephants in the different locations, it’s the happiest I’ve ever been. I feel like
I’m also a big lover of markets (you can see why I’ve been dreaming of Thailand for so many years) and they were incredible. The colours, the smells, the drinks. I tried some street food and what I had was really tasty but it’s very meat orientated and I’m lucky that I was able to keep a vegetarian diet when I was there. I managed to try some new fruits, a big lover of fruit here, but I wasn’t thrilled with the longan or rambutan, trilled I had the chance to try them though. A big part of the market/culture is haggling. I am so bad at it. Haggling makes me feel quite uncomfortable but it depends on the stallholder, some of them are open to bargaining but with some of them were very stubborn on their prices. Everything was quite cheap but you had to at least try and get the price down. In the end, I ended up buying loads (too much for my rucksack) and still came home with 60 baht so I’m a happy happy girl.
I’m studying an education degree at uni so having the opportunity to teach English in a school in Thailand just blows my mind. Being able to spend time with the kids and do lessons and games with them was so rewarding. My favourite class was definitely working with kindergarten. I’ve worked with kindergartners as part of one of my placements and I know I love the age group, they were just so much fun and so enthusiastic! It’s something I’ll remember forever.
I can’t thank enough Camp Thailand for the memories they gave me this summer. I made the best Pad Thai I’ve ever had, rode in a tuk-tuk and jumped into a waterfall. I never thought plain old Hannah would be so blessed to have these experiences. I’m so grateful and I’ve made memories that will last a lifetime. They offer so many unique opportunities in many different locations at
*This article has been written by Hannah on her personal blog.